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3 tactics for keeping kids at the same school during divorce

On Behalf of | May 30, 2024 | Child Custody |

Parents who are preparing for divorce tend to have more challenges ahead of them than those without children or those whose children are now lawful adults. Custody negotiations have a tendency to complicate divorce proceedings and increase the level of conflict between the parents in a family.

Parents may have a variety of different custody goals ranging from spending certain holidays with their children to having authority over religious matters if their faith is important to them. Issues related to education can also be sources of conflict during custody negotiations.

Particularly if the children in the family have developed strong relationships or currently attend a school district that performs well, one of the goals in the divorce may be to keep the children enrolled in the same school district. How can parents work toward achieving that goal while divorcing?

Looking for housing in the same district

Particularly in custody scenarios where the level of conflict between the parents is relatively high, it may not yet be certain which adult might eventually have more parenting time or stay in the marital home. The division of parenting time can influence which home serves as the primary residence for the children. Any parent seeking more time with their children may need to consider the impact that their address might have on their children’s school enrollment and look for housing in the same school district.

Agreeing to a birdnesting arrangement

Given the soaring cost of housing in recent years, it might be cost-prohibitive for either parent to buy or rent a property in the same school district where the children currently attend class. It may be more cost-effective for each parent to obtain a rental in a cheaper area while the children remain full-time in the marital home. Both parents can stay in the home during their parenting time and stay elsewhere when they do not have custody. Such arrangements can be particularly beneficial for children with special needs who may find regularly moving between houses to be disruptive and destabilizing.

Making arrangements with the school

It is sometimes possible to utilize special programs to keep the children enrolled at a school despite a change in their address. Intra-district school choice could help keep children enrolled in the same district they currently attend, but capacity and other factors make this an unreliable option.

Keeping the children in the same school district in a shared custody scenario can help provide them with support that can reduce the emotional impact of the divorce. Parents who explore every option are in a better position to minimize the stress and upheaval caused by shared custody arrangements.